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It is a classic - so much so that it created problems later on. How much of a classic? Enough to have spawned an entire genre of death metal that (even though it's hideous in every aspect) I can actually tolerate for extended listens. This album is goregrind, and what it should sound like (though some people put too much on exaggeration on the 'grind' part nowadays) always. The problem? The band was never this kind of classic again. They moved on to other classic, and left this one (literally) to rot.
The production is perfect, especially for the '80s. Granted, the mucky mess of a first album had a sound that (although unintentional) fit the atmosphere much more than this album, but there was no way Carcass would have become as big as they are now without cleaning it up significantly.
The composition is very technical in comparison to the old songs - think the longest track (probably Pyosified) and increase the production/decrease the fact a teenager wrote it, and that would only barely cover the songs here. It is obvious they had gotten a more solid grip on playing their instruments, Ken Owen in particular brought in double bass. %90 of goregrind that followed couldn't even hold a torch to his groove-and-grind drumlines (if you know pathologist you'd probably understand the other %10) - sure, speed is one thing, but is it effective?
Vocals - Bill is lower, Jeff is more pronounced. They still maintain an obvious dual attack, unlike the following album "Necroticism – Descanting the Insalubrious"*, and it creates a lot of variety in their songs. Some of the lines are still barked out, skipping syllables, but that's technically grindcore anyway. The bass and guitar lines are more technical, branching out into slower and more chugging territory, but still keeping those recognisable riffs that would be plagiarised for decades to come. Lyrical content is more mature than on "Reek of Putrefaction" - it covers more 'exploding-corpses' and less 'vomiting-up-your-innards'. Jeff and Ken had been doing their homework. Even the artwork is mature - their bassist's veganism is reflected in the collage of rotting corpses and animal meat. Did it put you off? Can't say it put me off, I'm eating bacon later.
The glowing highlights - the whole damn thing. If you thought Reek was too immature, try this - it's perfect. Buy it, and buy the original uncensored version if possible. The best tracks for me would be "Reek of Putrefaction", "Ruptured in Purulence" and "Exhume to Consume", but I'll let you decide for yourself.
*from memory, bitches.